For 15 years, ‘Goumba’ Johnny Sialiano was a fixture at Dance station WKTU. Last December, as FishbowlNY reported first, the popular Sialiano was shocked to learn that he was out.
But he’s back.
Beginning Tuesday, Sialiano takes over a struggling afternoon shift on Long Island’s Party 105/WPTY. They play a Rhythmic Adult Contemporary format featuring dance hits spanning four decades.
While the music isn’t much of a departure for Sialiano, the show is. Hell be flying solo, something Sialiano did sporadically as ‘KTU host.
“It was really one of the reasons I took the job,” Sialiano tells FishbowlNY.
He doesn’t see that as a challenge, but more of a chance to “reinvent” himself
Another important factor in signing on with Party— complete autonomy.
“I have 100 percent creative control of all four hours that I’m on the air, which is really nice, but is very dangerous, as far as I’m concerned,” Sialiano admits.
The Goumba Johnny reinvention at Party 105, means his primary audience is in Eastern Suffolk County, although the station’s Website is streaming live.
“My home’s in Suffolk County,” Sialiano says. “The fact that Vic Latino owns, operates, and works on the station was really the overriding factor.”
Sialiano says the gig came together in just 72 hours–starting simply with a text message.
“It was not real difficult. I just wanted to come back,” Sialiano says.
With a huge following from his ‘KTU days, Sialiano likes to know he’s been missed on the air.
“The response that I’ve gotten from social networking has been unbelievable,” Sialiano says. “People have been very, very responsive. There [are] a lot of listeners out there that can’t until Tuesday, just like me.”
Since leaving Clear Channel late last year, Sialiano worked on various other projects. He was not contractually bound to remain out of radio for any timeframe.
The longtime radio personality is grateful to be working given the seemingly endless industry-wide layoffs.
“In this economy, it doesn’t matter what field you’re in,” Sialiano says. “Everybody feels fortunate enough to be employed.”
So Sialiano is one of those “fortunate” ones, especially on the homefront.
“I didn’t realize what an aphrodisiac getting a job is until I told my wife, ‘I’m going back to work,'” Sialiano jokes. “She looked at me like Hugh Jackman just walked in the door naked.”